We are all about reaching children. One way we are able to do this is by partnering with local churches to do VBS. VBS is a LOT of work and requires many volunteers, which not all churches have access too. This summer, we had the opportunity to partner with four churches to do their VBS. We partnered with Albia Baptist Temple, New Journey in Knoxville, New Sharon churches (as a community) and 1st Christian Church in Sigourney. Each of these VBS’ was a blast!
The two we want to highlight now are the New Sharon and Sigourney VBS’. This year, CEF® was privileged to teach the New Sharon Community VBS. We partnered with the community to make this happen. Many of the churches sent volunteers, snacks, prizes and finances to make this possible! The 1st Christian Church graciously allowed us to use their building. We started with around 30 children, but they brought friends and we ended the week with 40 children!
We had many older children attend. One way we got them involved was by having a middle school praise band. These middle schoolers have talent and we wanted them to be able to use that for His glory. After the VBS, the middle school students said being on the praise band was their favorite part. The children also enjoyed seeing their friends and siblings up on stage. At this VBS, the children raised over $160 for Rose Kirby, a former Iowa summer missionary who is serving in Uganda.
We ended the week with a cook out and waterslide party. It was great for the community to come together and help put on a strong VBS for the children.
CEF also had the privilege of working with the Sigourney church. This church has not had VBS for many years and was excited to allow us to teach it. Each night, there were 15-20 children there. They were filled with energy! They loved playing games with the teachers and learning. There was a wide age range of children at the VBS which made it very fun to teach. The older kids enjoyed being helpers to the younger ones, especially during the games.
These children also brought lots of offering, around $150 for Rose Kirby. Because they tripled their goal, they got to dump 3 buckets of water on the teachers! They loved doing this. There were some children who attended, who do not have a regular church. The church will follow up with these children and invite them to their church!
Teaching VBS’ is a great partnership opportunity for both the local church and for CEF. The children love the teens, the teens love the children.